When household products pose a threat – Part 1

When you buy a product, whether it is a cellphone or a car, you expect it to work. Furthermore, you expect it to be safe. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. From phones catching fire to airbags exploding and dryers catching fire, there are times when products wind up in our homes that pose an unexpected threat to our families. Manufacturers have a duty to notify consumers when they realize they have unleased dangerous products that pose an unreasonable risk to the public. They usually do this through product recalls.

In 2008, one of the largest product recalls in history was enacted by Takata, a Japanese manufacturer of airbags. In fact, the recall is still in effect since it applied to over 40 million vehicles that contained Takata airbags. More recently, Costco was at the center of a premade chicken salad recall that landed multiple people in the hospital across several states due to severe food poisoning.

Currently, another manufacturer, Whirlpool, has taken heat for not issuing a recall for their tumble dryers that tend to burst into flame. Instead, the company is recommending that people continue using these machines and wait for the manufacturer to "modify" them.

What is a product recall?

In general, a product recall is a safety alert that a manufacturer, retailer or importer, releases to the public. Consumer watchdog organizations are usually responsible for forcing a company to issue a recall if it becomes obvious that a product is unsafe for use. In other cases, companies will voluntarily issue a safety recall and essentially admit that a product is dangerous.

Often the company will send consumers a notice that includes information like a product number or code, make and model, and the dates it was available for purchase. For example, you may have even received a safety recall for a particular part in your car at one time and had to take it in to the dealer for a quick fix. Sometimes the manufacturer will provide a completely new product, especially if it is too complicated to replace one faulty component.

If you or a member of your Phoenix household has suffered an injury due to a faulty product, you might be able to take legal action against the retailer or manufacturer. By doing nothing, you let big business get away with hurting innocent people. Take a stand and fight for rights as a consumer.

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  • United States District Court | District Of Arizona
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